Career Management, CEO

Envisioning the role of a CEO in 2035…

Envisioning the role of a CEO in 2035 requires understanding the trajectory of current trends in technology, societal expectations, global economics, and environmental concerns. The landscape of leadership is transforming, suggesting that CEOs will need to navigate a world vastly different from today’s. Here’s how the job of a CEO might look in 2035:

Mastery of Technology and Innovation

By 2035, technology will be even more deeply woven into the fabric of business. CEOs will need to be adept at leveraging emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, blockchain, and quantum computing. Understanding how these technologies can be applied to enhance business operations, product offerings, and customer experiences will be crucial. The successful CEO will be one who can anticipate technological disruptions and position their company to benefit from them rather than be sidelined.

Champion of Sustainability and Social Responsibility

The increasing urgency of climate change and social inequality will make sustainability and social responsibility core components of every company’s strategy. CEOs will be expected to lead their companies in a way that not only generates profit but also contributes positively to the planet and society. This could involve initiatives to reduce carbon footprints, ethical supply chain management, and efforts to address social issues through business practices. Transparent reporting on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria will likely be the norm, and CEOs will be at the forefront of these initiatives.

Architect of Agile and Resilient Organizations

The pace of change will only accelerate, making agility and resilience key attributes of successful organizations. CEOs in 2035 will need to foster a culture of innovation, where experimentation is encouraged and failure is seen as a stepping stone to success. Building teams that can quickly adapt to changing circumstances, pivot strategies when needed, and remain resilient in the face of challenges will be a critical responsibility of future CEOs.

Builder of Diverse and Inclusive Workplaces

Diversity and inclusion will be even more critical in 2035, as companies recognize the value of diverse perspectives in driving innovation and understanding global markets. CEOs will need to go beyond superficial measures to create genuinely inclusive cultures where everyone feels valued and empowered. This includes ensuring diversity at all levels of the organization, from the boardroom to entry-level positions, and actively working to eliminate bias and discrimination.

Visionary Leader and Ethical Steward

The CEO of 2035 will need to be a visionary, capable of looking beyond short-term gains to see the bigger picture of how their company fits into a rapidly changing world. Ethical leadership will be paramount, as stakeholders increasingly hold companies to high standards of integrity and transparency. CEOs will need to navigate complex ethical dilemmas, making decisions that balance the interests of various stakeholders while adhering to core values.


In summary, the CEO of 2035 will be much more than a business leader. They will be technology-savvy innovators, champions of sustainability and social responsibility, architects of agile and resilient organizations, builders of diverse and inclusive workplaces, and visionary leaders who operate with the highest ethical standards. The CEOs who can rise to these challenges will be well-positioned to lead their companies into a prosperous and sustainable future. Ram Subramaniam.

Business Education, Career Management, CEO

Details of the ‘CEO-2035’ course

Course Title: Leadership for the Future: Grooming Business Students into Future CEOs

Course Description: This course is designed for business students who aspire to become future CEOs. The course focuses on developing leadership skills, strategic thinking, and a comprehensive understanding of the various aspects of business management required to acquire the CEO role and excel in it. Students will learn through a combination of lectures, case studies, discussions, group projects, and guest lectures from experienced CEOs and industry experts.

Course Objectives:

  1. Develop Leadership Skills: Students will learn essential leadership skills, including effective communication, decision-making, negotiation, and conflict resolution, to effectively lead teams and organizations.
  2. Foster Strategic Thinking: Students will learn how to think critically and strategically, analyze complex business situations, and make informed decisions to drive the long-term success of the organization.
  3. Understand Business Functions: Students will gain a comprehensive understanding of various business functions, including finance, marketing, operations, human resources, and corporate strategy, to develop a holistic approach to business management.
  4. Learn Corporate Governance: Students will learn about the principles of corporate governance, ethical decision-making, and responsible leadership, emphasizing the importance of ethical and socially responsible practices in the modern business landscape.
  5. Develop Global Perspective: Students will gain an understanding of the global business environment, including international markets, geopolitical risks, cultural differences, and emerging trends, to prepare them for leading in a globalized world.
  6. Enhance Communication and Interpersonal Skills: Students will develop effective communication and interpersonal skills, including public speaking, presentation, networking, and relationship-building, critical for success as a CEO.
  7. Learn from Industry Experts: Students will have the opportunity to learn from experienced CEOs and industry experts through guest lectures, case studies, and real-world examples, providing practical insights into the challenges and opportunities of leading organizations.
  8. Capstone Project: Students will apply the knowledge and skills gained throughout the course to develop a strategic business plan, which will serve as a capstone project, allowing them to integrate and demonstrate their learning in a practical business context.

Course Outline:

  1. Introduction to CEO Role
  2. Strategic Thinking and Decision-Making
  3. Business Functions and Holistic Management
  4. Corporate Governance and Ethics
  5. Global Business and Emerging Trends
  6. Communication and Interpersonal Skills for CEOs
  7. Leading High-Performing Teams
  8. Change Management and Innovation
  9. CEO as a Visionary and Transformational Leader
  10. Guest Lectures and Case Studies from CEOs
  11. Capstone Project: Developing a Strategic Business Plan

Assessment Methods:

  1. Class participation in discussions and group activities
  2. Case study analysis and presentations
  3. Individual and group projects
  4. Written assignments
  5. Guest lecture reflections
  6. Capstone project presentation and report

By the end of this course, students will have developed the knowledge, skills, and mindset required to excel in the role of a CEO, and be prepared to take on leadership positions in the business world with confidence and competence.

Business Education, Career Management, Personal Finance

Inflation Education and Education Inflation!

Looks like many things have gotten more expensive since Y2K. Hospital services topped the list with more than 200% inflation! I’m not surprised but I take little solace in knowing that better medicines and quality treatment options may have contributed to higher costs. Can you guess which sector was a close second in high inflation? Education! To be more precise, tuition and text book costs. I wanted to start cursing when I saw that the prices in education sector in 2023 were 175% of those in 2020. Did the quality of education improve? Did the quality of professors improve? No and No! Then, what explains this unreasonable price increase? College degrees have become status symbols. Universities have figured that the society is obsessed with fancy degrees. I hate to say this, but Peter Thiel may have a point! As long as we don’t examine the ROI of college education before we enroll, universities have no incentive to care! With costs getting higher and higher, no wonder it’s called higher education! click on the image below to read the full report from WEF.


Business Education, Career Management

Short-term thinking leading to short-term loyalties?

“Employers view frequent job-hopping negatively,” said our invited speaker in my class today. She suggested that students avoid short-term thinking in career planning. As she was explaining, I realized that short-term thinking is ubiquitous. Could the ‘same day delivery’ service be making us ‘take one day at a time’ people? Later, I asked a friend who prefers to trade than invest long-term, his views on this topic, he made an interesting statement:

When CEOs manage by quarterly earnings, technologies/business models change rapidly, Netflix stock loses 30% and Twitter gains 25% in one day, and cryptocurrencies challenge the currencies issued by governments, you want me to think long-term! Are you breathing Oxygen or snuffing paint?

His response was valid. My friend thrives on volatility, especially as a trader, in daily and hourly volatility. However, does frequent job-hopping by employees send a signal to future employers? Employers are more likely to perceive job-hopping negatively, and understandably so.  I recommend that those changing jobs often learn to articulate the reason for switching jobs often. For instance,  moving from one job to another in pursuit of learning opportunities and not merely for a few extra bucks is understandable. But employees must be able to document what they learned and how it will help future employers.

About my friend’s question about breathing Oxygen or not, nowadays in many cities in California, it does feel like I’m sniffing paint when I’m outdoors. That’s on a good day!

Business Education, Career Management

Mr. Ashutosh Garg on improving the quality of business education

Mr. Ashutosh Garg addesses how the quality of business education may be improved by inviting practitioners to the classrooms. A global corporate executive, serial founder, and a CEO advisor, he discusses his experience as a visiting faculty to schools around the world in a recent interview. I invited him to address my audience at a Faculty Development Program.

Business Education, Career Management, CEO

Remermber my warning about SPAC? What are SPAC’s responsibilities in IPO?

Trevor Milton, the founder of Nikola, a EV manufacturer lied “nearly about all aspects of the business” acording to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan. Did the SPAC that took Nikola public drop the ball and cause this debacle? Would the traditional vetting process have eliminated this quagmire? Prosecutors say, “To make it appear the truck prototype was driving, it was towed to the top of a hill and then rolled down to the bottom.” Click the images below and read on….


Career Management, Entrepreneurship, Fintech, Python, Tech

IIT Madras launches online Bachelor, Diploma in Datascience and Programming

It’s here finally! It has been my dream that a reputed school in India offer an online undergrad degree in Computer Science and now IIT-M is doing it. Now it’s open to all. Well, almost to all. I wish IIT-M opened it to all, not solely to those who completed 12th grade! I see a big demand for this course and wish IIT-M success. This is going to open doors to so many poor, bright students. Please send me your views to my Stanford email ID.


Career Management, CEO

Make hay when it rains! Companies that save cash for a rainy day can. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has the cash.

Remember in the CEO-2030 class I discussed how companies that save cash for a rainy day can make go bargain hunting? I also discussed why ‘resource allocation and deployment’ must be taught as an elective. Here is an example of how cash comes handy. Click on the URL below.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has the cash to buy Tesla, Starbucks, or McDonald’s after the coronavirus sell-off

Career Management, CEO, Private Equity

M & A galore in the horizon? PE funds have been hoarding cash and waiting for this moment!

Private Equity firms have more than 1$ Trillion in cash! This could be the beginning of a once in a lifetime investment opportunity for those in waiting. Remember the discussion in the CEO-2030 class how the 2007 financial crisis opened up opportunities for acquistions and thus a spike in demand for new CEOs? CNBC had an intetresting article on this topic. Please click the image below. Should companies take PE’s money or not? Do they even have an option? What if the PE firms go hostile? I’m interested in what you have to say on this.


Career Management, Entrepreneurship, Machine Learning, Tech

The 10 most in-demand skills of 2019, according to LinkedIn

I don’t like it, but the four of the 6 top skills required are IT skills! Please read on. Analytical reasoning is not exclusive to IT and I haven’t considered it as an IT only skill! Others are.

1) Cloud Computing
2) Artificial Intelligence
3) Analytical Reasoning
4) People Management
5) UX Design
6) Mobile Application Development

Click the URL and read on……

The 10 most in-demand skills of 2019, according to LinkedIn

Ram Subramaniam Stanford